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Seven-year-old Christian band releases first album

February 21, 2005|by ANDREA ROWLAND

andrear@herald-mail.com

Members of the local contemporary Christian band Forgiven use music as a means to spread their spiritual beliefs.

"We just want to get out and use our talents that the Lord's given us and share it with others " said drummer Blake Gelwicks, 51, of Hagerstown.

Forgiven's concerts always are free.

Band members - including lead vocalist and percussionist Larry Harnish; Darryl Hughes, who sings and plays guitar and keyboard; guitarist Carl Black Jr.; and Mike Jordan, who sings and plays bass guitar - recently released the group's first CD, "Lost Without God's Love." The disc features 10 original songs with lyrics centered around the benefits of turning to God for guidance and support, Gelwicks said.

He, Harnish and Hughes started Forgiven about seven years ago to spread word about Christianity to others, and to illustrate with their music and life experiences how God changes lives.

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"A lot of the guys in the band had been in secular bands in the past, but we just decided that our talents would be better used to serve the Lord," Gelwicks said. "The Lord's opened a lot of doors for us that we never expected."

In addition to recording a CD, Forgiven has had the opportunity to minister through music at coffeehouses, churches and other venues throughout Western Maryland, he said. Forgiven's music has aired on radio stations including MIX 95.1 in Chambersburg, Pa., and WLTF 97.5 in Martinsburg, W.Va.

Forgiven is the house band at Hagerstown Grace Brethren Church's coffeehouse, the One Way Caf, which features guest Christian bands at 6:30 p.m. the first Saturday of each month. To learn more about the band, go to www.hagerstowngrace.com on the Web.

"Lost Without God's Love" is available from band members and at Christian Light Bookstore in Hagerstown and Chambersburg.

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